Summer Possibility

Do you feel like you are working so hard and not getting where you want?
Does it feel like you are hitting the wall and not seeing the results you had hoped for?

Here we are at the halfway point of the year, and it’s a really good time to just check in and ask,
How is it going?

Sometimes, however, the answer we see can be pretty tricky to process.

You may feel disappointed.
You may be thinking,
I should be farther along than this by now.

The day to day grind can really take us out and while we started the year with so much enthusiasm, the summer can typically be a place where everything slows down.  And for many, I imagine that can be scary, especially when it comes to your livelihood and your dreams.

So, what actually helps in the summer heat?
What helps when we see where we are and just feel disappointed?

Well, as James Taylor famously sang,
You’ve got a friend…..

This past week I went to see my acupuncturist for the first time in almost two years, the luminous Sabbath McLean.

This is the woman who saw me through my divorce, back injury, car accidents, and really me creating a whole new life.

I’ll never forget the first time I went to see her.  I was overcome with grief as my divorce was happening, and I sat in front of her and she looked at me with the widest eyes of compassion.

I felt so SEEN, so safe.  She held the space as I wept, and I knew after the first session I would be back again…and again….and again.

What I could have never imagined was how a deeper connection was formed.  When I started dating for the first time in my life at the age of 38, Sabbath shared her success story of meeting her husband online.  Over the years, I would come in with my woes and trials of finding my man. Sometimes we laughed, and many times, I cried.

I remember coming in after a deep disappointment and feeling so panicked I was never going to find my man, and Sabbath looked me deep in the eyes and said,
You haven’t given up.
You are still here.

She was reminding me of my perseverance, and reminding me of my vision, of my WHY.

And over the four years I was seeing her, something else magical was happening for both of us.
We were both creating our own companies.  We shared our dreams of having our own businesses, ones we loved where we no longer had to answer to bosses, and could have creative control over what we offered.

No more middle men.

In 2015, I opened the doors to ZenRedNYC, and in 2017, she opened the doors to Silver Spring Wellness.

When I saw Sabbath this week, I was overcome with emotion.  Again, sitting in front of her large eyes, I said,
Sabbath, it happened….I’m married now.

She smiled and said,
And you appear so happy.

And as I choked on my tears, I shared,
It’s a miracle…he’s more than I could have ever hoped for.

Everything came flooding in at that moment.  All the times I came in, feeling so frustrated.  All the summers I looked at where I was and wasn’t where I wanted to be. The crazy ups and downs of the journey and all my fears it would never happen.

But, Sabbath reminded me, I stayed IN it.
I stayed committed to my vision.
I stayed connected to my dream.

And here we were.

Sabbath with a successful wellness center, full of the practitioners she wanted, and me, happily married to the most incredible man, and doing work I love.

Sabbath was and has been a witness to my hardest and most challenging journey.
She has also been witness to my greatest triumphs.

And in seeing her, I was reminded of my OWN strength and capability…through her wide and compassionate eyes.

I saw myself, and knew everything is going to be ok.
Everything IS ok.

When we are in the thick of things, we can easily lose sight of the journey.
And we can also lose sight of our support.

If you are feeling stuck, this is the perfect time of year to re-focus on your vision.

What was that creative dream you had back in January?

Now, take the time to ask yourself some really powerful questions,
* What is WORKING as you progress towards your vision?
* What are your stumbling blocks and what actions can you take to resolve them?

And most importantly,
* What support might you add to make your progress even more efficient, fun and easy?

Simply put, we don’t get there alone.
We are stronger together.

Who is championing you in your life right now?
Who is rooting for your Art and Creative Dreams?

We can only see as far as our limitations, so it is vital you have help on your journey.

Whether that is a coach or mentor…who is SEEING you for ALL you are?

Sometimes, it takes being seen by someone who believes in us to wake up to our greatest source and simple fact I know if my heart about you,
You are limitless.

Surround yourself with people who nurture and promote you.

Let the summer sun shine on your brilliance.

Take stock where you are, and where you are headed, and celebrate everything that has led you to here.

This is a new day full of possibilities.  Bring close those that see YOUR possibility too.

Crack Open

How are you feeling about your career?

Are you where you want to be?
Is your audience growing and adoring you?
Do you have money coming in from your work and systems in place for much more to flow in the new year?

Take a moment….and truly ask,
How is it going?

As we near the end of the year, this is a big time for reflection, to ask,
What is working?
What is NOT working?

And as Creatives, we tend to get really caught up in what’s NOT working.  It can be devastating to put out so much of ourselves, our passion and craft, and not see the return we desire.

And wanting to put on the “brave face” makes it even harder, especially at this time of year when we have the pressure of holidays, family, and all the gatherings where people are asking US,
So….how’s it going??

It can feel like we are cracking, and coming undone.

And we can’t have that, right?  We have to keep it together. We may feel we have to:
look the part
fake it til we make it
appear confident

Isn’t that how success comes?

 

Oh my God……there’s a HUGE crack…..

I look down at my bowl in my bathroom and see this enormous crack in the clay.

I pick up the bowl and can feel a panic in my stomach.  As I cup the base, my mind starts to race,
I just GOT this

This bowl was made for my husband and I as a wedding gift from one of my Zen teachers and dear friends.  Using the Raku technique, she made us a ring bowl, which was used in our wedding ceremony.  My husband and I placed our wedding rings in this bowl when we made our sacred vows to each other.

There was deep significance to this bowl.

Deep significance to this marriage.

I went through a devastating divorce six years ago, and the journey to finding love again was quite intense.  I had a ton of healing to do.  I went on the first date of my LIFE at the age of 38, I had to learn all the ins and outs of online dating, in which I was a complete beginner and VERY awkward. I had to get in touch with my feminine, which had been completely shut down for years. I had zero confidence.

I worked with coaches, I signed up for videos and email lists, because I kept feeling SO lost.  I knew I wanted this with all my heart, but was struggling in the process.

I would get my hopes up so many times, thinking I was truly READY for lasting love, only to be disappointed again. And time was ticking….I was in my early 40’s and really struggling with wanting him here now.

How much time did I really have?

Have you ever felt this?
The urgency of time?

When I finally found my life partner it was a whole new level, one I never thought possible, and I found myself burst open with love. The life I had only dreamed of was coming true.  All the work I had done was now coming to fruition.

Our wedding ceremony was profound for me.  In front of closest family and friends, I took a deep breath, and felt the emotion rise in my throat as I ended my vows staring into the eyes of my beloved with,

20 years ago I stood before witnesses
believing I understood this act.
I honor and love that woman
who’s long sleep brought me to this day.
Today, I meet her on the shore
and turn to you whole,
my dear love.
I vow to awaken within our clasped hands and joined lives.
from the crickets song to the dying leaves.
Unfurled in the sacred space,
petals open for all to see,

I vow to love you,

Lights on and Awake.

 

The day was amazing.  The wedding was sacred and beautiful.  My husband and I brought that special bowl back to our house and placed it in our bathroom to hold our rings.

Deep significance.

And now there was a crack……
What did this mean?
I thought I had worked through all of this!
Wasn’t this bowl supposed to be a symbol of the healing, and the wholeness of finding each other?

I reached out to my teacher Hojin to ask if she could repair the bowl and she said she absolutely could.  Having just returned from India, she actually had this new technique of filling the crack with gold.

Within a short time, the bowl was returned to us and I had expected to just see the crack, and now saw a gold line throughout the whole bowl.  That wasn’t there before….had it cracked more?

When I asked Hojin about it, she said,
I had to break it open to fix it.
It had to come apart to be repaired.

And then I got it. All of it.

And I now saw the beauty, and honestly, how the bowl in it’s present state was actually perfect.

My whole life came apart in order to discover my true calling as an Artist.
My marriage came apart for me to discover what true and healthy love actually was.
My career as a performer came apart for me to create my own platform and work I love.

The WAY I WAS in my life broke open.
I surrendered, I asked for help, and my cracks that I had tried for YEARS to hide, finally broke me open.

And for the first time, I had deep connection with my audience and raving fans. I realized I had been going about growing my audience completely BACKWARDS.

The cracks had actually been there all along SHOWING me what wasn’t working.  They were pointing to where I was exhausting myself.  They were pointing to where I was trying the same thing OVER AND OVER and expecting different results.

Isn’t that the definition of insanity?

And how about you?

As you take this time to reflect on 2018, where are your cracks?
Are you more concerned with having it all together, then actually getting the help you need?

What do you need?
Do you even know?

Our journey as Artists is not linear.
Our journey was never meant to do alone.

It can feel deeply isolating in the struggle, but perhaps the struggle is there to HELP you….

 

Take a moment, without judgement and close your eyes.  Come into your body and connect to your breath.  Now ask yourself,
What do I MOST need?

Let this arise, cracks and all.  Allow yourself to see where you truly are.  Release the judgement that you have to do this by yourself.

Crack open.

And then place your attention on the REPAIR.  Fill the cracks with GOLD.  That means, actually addressing what you need NOW to build your career as an Artist and to grow your audience.

And by GOLD, I mean skillful.
I mean helpful.
I mean from someone who GETS you and can actually partner with you to create the results you want in your career. Someone who is either a professional or has been a professional.

 

Your career, this precious bowl…..what could it mean to repair what’s not working?
What would be possible for you then?

I’m standing for your dreams.
Gold in hand.